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Families Without Fathers

There is a crisis of families without fathers. According to the National Fatherhood Initiative there are over 18 million children in the United States without a biological, step, or adoptive father living at home.

One out of four children have an absent “father.” Their website lists ten adverse results from this crisis.

God established the family structure to function with two parents, a mother and a father. It was designed to be the spiritual and moral foundation for society. Many single moms are doing a fabulous job of raising quality kids, but they benefit the most from having both a mom and a dad. Each parent can provide conversations and positive interactions that compliment each other to their childrens’ benefit. However, fathers need to take the lead in doing this. When they are absent, this won’t happen.

The Bible has much to say about the family. Out of dozens of verses, I will give just several. Notice the attention given to both parents, particularly fathers. “A wise son makes his father glad, but a foolish son is a sorrow to his mother”(Proverbs 10:1), and “a wise son hears his father’s instruction…”(Proverbs 13:1). Ephesians 6:1-4 gives a good summation to the family structure: “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother…Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”

One of the ten adverse consequences from the absence of a father given on the above-mentioned website is participation in violent activity. Research also shows a direct link between mass shootings and boys or men without fathers. Interesting, the Bible has a very relevant passage that shows the important role of parents in instructing their sons: “Hear my son, your father’s instruction, and forsake not your mother’s teaching…” In the context of associating with violent people, this passage continues, “If they say, ‘Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood, let us ambush the innocent without reason…my son, do not walk in the way with them, hold back your foot from their path’”(Proverbs 1:8-15).

Gun control is no substitute for a properly functioning family that has a mom and a dad. Most of the violence, including mass shootings, is carried out by younger men. Struggling boys need a male figure at home to talk to, but both parents must assume responsibility by giving their children wise counsel. Children need to respect their parents. Parents should encourage their children to express their emotions about any issue that is bothering them, and seek to resolve it any way they can, before it leads to hatred, mental issues, or potential violence.

What are some specific and positive things that come to mind as a result of having a father in the family?

About John Clark

John Livingston Clark is 74 years of age and lives in central Washington State. He has written two published books, and two published poems. His initial book is called, " God's Healing Hope: Breaking the Strongholds of Wrong Thinking." His second book, released in December of 2016, is a motivational book written to seniors titled, " Seniors: Are You Retiring or Recharging?" Both books are available on amazon. You can also view his writings on www.faithwriters.com. His “Poem For Senior Citizens” is in the 5th spot on FW.

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One comment

  1. Jennifer Woodley

    Hi John,

    Such a timely article. I am a school chaplain here in Australia and see first hand the effect a non-father presence in the family has upon children. A non-father presence in families sets children at a disadvantage, however, for those children who are raised in a 2 parent household (mother and father), they are healthier both physically and
    mentally. The next best thing to fathers in the home is strong male role models and so I pray that there would be more male chaplains in schools who can offer the male presence support that so many children need.

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